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August 15, 2011
By: Dan Hopkins
Moving your worldly possessions involves a lot of organization, and if there’s one thing professional movers understand, it’s to expect the unexpected. In fact, that’s a major reason why many people choose to hand over the task of moving to companies that do this every day. Some do-it-yourself moves go well; others end up unnecessarily stressful because those completing the work don’t anticipate potential glitches. Checklists are great, but every single move is different – and nothing beats experience for transferring household and other goods quickly, safely and efficiently.
For example, if you move in the winter and it’s a snowy, slushy day, how do you protect the floors from water/salt damage at both ends? What about getting large items around hard-to-maneuver corners without marking walls? What if someone gets hurt? Do you know how to pack delicate items such as lampshades and glassware to eliminate shifting and potential breakage during a long haul? What if the truck breaks down or gets into an accident halfway to your new home?
Professional movers have resources to draw upon to anticipate and/or handle any number of unexpected happenings. Training is a great preventative measure – when you shop for a mover, find out if and how the drivers and moving people are trained. Ask whether they have a “Plan B” in case of vehicle problems, and what you can do to be as prepared as possible when the packing/moving begins.
As tempting as a D-I-Y move may be, think through the consequences. Are you prepared to deal with the possibility of friends or family members not showing up on moving day due to illness or hurt themselves trying to move heavy items? Do you have a backup plan for extra items in case you misjudge the size of moving vehicle you need? What about plants? Hazardous liquids? Items such as chain saws and lawnmowers with gas or grease on them? Large items like ladders?
Of course, there are specialty items that require an unusual level of care – pianos, Pool Tables, Grandfather Clocks, artwork, antiques and the like. The money you think you’ll save by not hiring a professional mover may end up being spent on repairs if these large and valuable pieces are not handled correctly. Worse yet, irreplaceable items may be lost forever.
And have you thought through unpacking at the other end? On your first night there, you will need bedding, toiletries, towels and some kitchen items. Do you have a plan that includes being able to find those things easily and quickly?
All of these considerations and more are covered in the training that TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® franchisees take part in at what we call STICK MEN UNIVERSITY® in honour of the company logo. Among the many things they learn is how to maneuver, wrap, pack and load items from big-screen televisions to china cabinets filled with breakables.
If you do decide to move yourself, on the TWO MEN AND A TRUCK website, we provide moving tips, a moving checklist and even special things to consider for extremely large items. Give some thought to what might happen along the way and make contingency plans. And be realistic – hiring a professional mover can offer tremendous peace-of-mind and is money well spent.
Other Articles by Dan Hopkins:
ABOUT TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® – CANADA
In 2005, TMT International awarded its first master franchise in Canada to TMT Franchising Corp - a division of the Heron Capital Corporation. The Canadian TMT Master Franchise company currently has a customer referral rate of 94 per cent with fourteen Ontario locations servicing London, Hamilton, Halton, Mississauga North, Mississauga South, Brampton, Etobicoke, Toronto Mid-Town, Toronto East, Oshawa, Barrie, Newmarket / Aurora, Kingston and Ottawa. Visit www.twomen.ca.
Dan Hopkins is Chief Operating Officer and Vice President, Development & Operations, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® - CANADA
ABOUT TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®